Have you taken the kids out for a meal lately? Did the lack of options on the kids menu surprise you given today’s obesity epidemic?
While parents can choose from smashed avocado or steak and salad, the kids get their choice from a menu of chicken nuggets, fish and chips, pizza and chips, mini burger and chips, among other less-than-healthy selections.
With Sushi becoming a popular lunch box choice, it is surprising more menus don’t offer this for our children. I rarely see an option of meat and veg these days for the kids.
More than 30,000 Australian children are now severely obese. Chefs and dietitians alike are calling for restauranteurs to give parents and younger diners a greater choice when assembling their children’s menus, reports ABC.
Dietitian Hannah Graham said ‘kid-sized’ versions of adult menu items was an idea worth considering.
“They should be eating a smaller portion of what is being served at the family table,” Ms Graham said.
“What parents are doing is normal to children, so giving [children] the same choices would definitely have positive effects.”
“We’re moving away from the whole ‘finish your plate’ ideal, because that’s where you lose touch with your appetite,” Ms Graham said.
“And if restaurants get to know what an actual portion size is, they can probably save themselves a whole lot of plate waste.”
The latest findings from Roy Morgan’s nationwide Young Australians Survey show more than one-third of the nation’s kids have body-image issues.
With More than one in five boys aged six to seven worry about being fat.
My eldest son (12) has refused to order off the kids menu for a couple of years now, due to lack of choice. But it can be tricky as most meals are too big for him to finish as well. Not many places are willing to adjust the size of a meal to suit the diner. Quite frustrating at times.
Many parents have vented their frustrations on the ABC Facebook page. Saying they often share meals with their kids so they can order a healthier option. Meanwhile some chefs and restaurant managers have actually lashed out saying they have tried to offer better choices but children always choose nuggets and chips. One person even commented saying teens will only order just garlic bread and/or chips. Blaming parents for their bad choices.
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